Winter is coming: Here’s how to save by improving your property.
What with endless rain, strong winds, icy frost and swirling snow, the winter can be a tough time for our homes! Without a bit of love, care and attention, we can easily end up living in leaking, draughty and damp houses throughout the colder months.
Luckily, a bit of preparation and know-how can make a huge difference, with just a few hours of effort transforming your home into a cosy, dry and welcoming place to spend the winter. If you’re starting to batten down the hatches, here’s the definitive guide to preparing your home for winter, direct from the Citrus news team.
Get your home insurance sorted
Though the aim of preparing your home for the winter is to avoid any major disasters, there are some things that you simply can’t foresee. If your home is damaged in a storm, by a leaky pipe or in any other way during the winter, having good home insurance will make a huge difference.
Some companies may have specific winter-related damage policies so make sure you read the small print to ensure you know exactly what you’re getting. There are plenty of insurers out there offering comprehensive home insurance policies for reasonable rates, so do a bit of research before you sign on the dotted line.
Have your boiler serviced
There’s nothing worse than waking up on a cold winter’s morning to discover you have no hot water. Not only will this put a nice hot shower out of reach, but in most cases it will also stop your central heating from working too, leaving you very much in the cold.
By having your boiler serviced before the winter sets in, you can avoid any nasty surprises when it gets really cold, ensuring that you have piping hot water and fully working radiators throughout the cold months.
Clear your guttering
A lot of winter-related problems come from clogged up guttering. From a bit of damp to full-on leaks, you can avoid a range of issues by thoroughly clearing your guttering before the rain begins in earnest.
During the autumn months, leaves, debris and grime will have collected in your gutters, causing them to become clogged and, in some cases, completely blocked. This can cause rainwater to overflow, resulting in leaks, mould and damp in your home.
You’ll need to give your gutters a thorough clean to ensure you remove all dirt and debris. If you live in an area with a lot of trees, you may have to repeat the process more than once during the winter.
Trim those trees!
To prevent excess leaves clogging up your gutting, hire a professional to trim any trees that are close to your home before the bad weather begins.
This will also be a good opportunity to remove any diseased or damaged branches. Left unattended, these weaker parts of the tree could come off in a big storm and potentially damage your property.
Not only will good insulation help to keep your home warm and cosy over the winter, but it will also ensure your energy bills are as low as possible.
From loft insulation to double-glazing, giving your property an extra layer will keep the warm air in and the cold air out. You’ll also need to insulate your pipes to prevent cracks or leaks appearing in extreme weather.
Grants are available for those who want to thoroughly insulate their home, so contact your council before you begin work to see if you can apply.
Bleed your radiators
To ensure you’re getting the best possible performance out of your radiators, you’ll need to bleed them on a reasonably regular basis.
Bleeding radiators helps to remove any pockets of trapped air, allowing the hot water to circulate freely and ensuring you get the full benefit of your central heating system
Create a blackout kit
Due to the extreme weather we see in the winter months, power lines can be damaged, and blackouts are not uncommon.
To ensure that you’re not caught out when the energy fails, create a blackout kit and keep it in an easy to access location. Ideally, your kit should contain candles, matches and blankets, this should keep you warm and illuminated until the power is restored.
Block those draughts
Draughts from old windows, ill-fitting doors and damaged frames can significantly affect the temperature of your home, making it feel cold and uncomfortable even when your heating is on full blast.
To prevent this, replace any damaged windowpanes, add double-glazing where possible and re-fit any doors that are letting in a draught. If you’re working to a tight budget, simply placing draught excluders at the bottom of your doors and windows can make a big difference.
Switch energy suppliers
Switching energy suppliers is easier than you think, there will be no disruption to your service, you’ll just get a bill from a different company at the end of the month. And as the market becomes more competitive, there are some serious savings to be made.
There are various websites that offer comparisons based on your usage and current tariff, so why not take a few minutes out to compare prices? You might just find you make a big saving.
That’s all, folks!
Thanks for stopping by at the Citrus news section! We hope you’ve found today’s item helpful and informative.